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ARLA campaigning to spread Tenant fees over the first 6 months

February 9, 2017 | Landlord News  

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In a meeting with the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) he presented a policy paper outlining ARLA’s view on how best to practically implement the proposed ban on tenant fees in England.

New ARLA research highlights the impact a full ban would have on Tenants, Letting Agents and the broader housing market as a whole. The research reveals that more than four out of ten (42%) Letting Agents expect that a fees ban will result in reduced staff numbers in the medium to long term, while 62% of agents think that a full ban will cause the quality of rental properties to decline which is a concern for the industry.

There are many benefits to ARLA’s proposal including being able to maintain the current levels of service to Tenants. It is worrying to see that Letting Agents expect the condition of properties to worsen, and 61% also expect property management standards to drop.

Another advantage is the spreading of costs for vital services making Tenancies more affordable to Tenants, because they will only need to find the deposit and the first month’s rent initially.

Importantly, under ARLA’s proposals, Tenants would only pay for costs for vital services over the first six months of their Tenancy, rather than subsequent years: meaning that there would be no additional cost for renewing a Contract.

The proposals will also affect Landlords. Spreading the costs for these services will mean that Landlords will also not face higher charges at a time when they are already facing much stricter levels of regulation and vast tax increases. ARLA’s research shows that the majority of Letting Agents expect rents to rise if a full ban comes into force, as agents, who need to recoup the costs incurred in undertaking the important work that fees currently cover, pass these onto Landlords.

Finally, ARLA’s research found that over 40% of Letting Agents believe that a full ban will result in staff numbers being reduced in the medium to long term. By spreading costs for essential services, jobs in the Letting Agency sector will be saved, preventing a negative impact on the wider economy. Fees also provide a valuable source of revenue to the Exchequer in VAT receipts, which will be retained by ARLA’s proposal.

Luke Gidney, Managing Director of Let Leeds comments “I feel that some agents’ fees are extortionate and have ripped off Tenants for years, so therefore we support a ban on upfront Tenant fees. We also agree that a fee should be charged over the course of the first six months of the Tenancy and are in support of ARLA’s recommendations overall.”

To read ARLA’s full proposal please click here. Let Leeds fully support ARLA’s proposal and believe that spreading Tenant’s fees over six months would have a much greater positive effect than an outright ban.

To find out more call our dedicated team on 0113 320 2000.

 

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